Jack Black harkened “this might be the greatest show you’ve ever seen”, and he wasn’t kidding, as Tenacious D tore the roof off of The Mann Center
Like a fiery phoenix or whirling durvish, Tenacious D rumbled into The Mann Center this past Sunday for what Jack Black called “the greatest show they ever played”. While that may have only been true for the night, there’s no denying that JB and Kyle Gass laid it all out there on that ampitheater stage.
Draped in a thick green glow, the hard rocking duo took the stage as the “Post-Apocalyptic Theme” rang out through the crowd. JB presented a glowing crystal orb that he insisted would transport everyone to another dimension. After the first few songs, I think he may have been right.
“JB JR Rap”, “Woman Time”, and “Save the World” kicked off the set before JB & Kyle reached for some “Low Hanging Fruit” (all the puns in the world intended). The pair came out with so much energy and vigor, I’m still amazed they managed to get through the whole set.
In the style of another JB, Jack Black did his best James Brown impression as as he regained himself. Kyle took this opportunity to break out Thin Lizzy’s “Jailbreak” before moving on to the real meat of the set.
“Rize of the Fenix” was up next, accompanied by the massive phoenix stage display looming over the band. I’m pretty sure I heard that thing squawk a time or two. The tour debut of “Deth Starr” followed and this is really when the set somehow kicked it into another gear. The adoration of the crowd was palbable as JB continued to interract with them. Kyle was throwing in obligatory “Go Eagles” chants while JB played to the crowd perfectly by stating “So far, this might be the best show we’ve ever done.” To wit, he followed that up with “This might be the best show you have ever seen.” I don’t think anyone at The Mann Center that night would disagree.
Before anymore rocking could be done, the duo shifted gears into “Saxaboom”, at which point cartoonish saxophones were brought out and the night turned into a dance party. For anyone only interested in rock, JB mockingly bellowed “I didn’t come here to dance I came here to rock”. His response was perfect – “No more rocking until I see some more dancing”. The biggest reaction so far came as the opening chords of “Kickapoo” was washing over the crowd. Everyone in attendance was singing it back at that point, which only fed into JB & Kyle’s frenzy.
“The Metal” was accompanied by a giant metal robot, no doubt inhabitated by a dedicated roadie. “Dude (I Totally Miss You)” and “Friendship” were nicely weaved into the closing moments of the set before ending with a “Panama” riff laden “Double Team”.
For the encore, JB & Kyle dedicated “Throw Down” to Rock the Vote – an endeavor they’ve embarked on in partnership with Propeller.
“In partnership with the social impact platform Propeller, Tenacious D have just announced a big sweepstakes to inspire their fans to vote this upcoming midterm election season and help ensure that their friends and family do the same. In addition to the sweepstakes – which has massive prizes like round-trip travel and meet & greet to one of the band’s upcoming shows – Propeller are also set-up at the band’s shows along their current tour. More info on the sweeps here. By visiting this link, fans enter by taking actions such as checking voter registration status, receiving election reminders and showing up at the polls. The more actions you take, the more points you earn, and those points can be redeemed for rewards from Tenacious D such as Zoom calls and signed merchandise, memorabilia and a shot at the grand prize flyaway.”
This is an initiative that Independent Philly can definitely get behind.
As the final notes rang out on “Fuck Her Gently”, I was truly glad I got to experience such a unique and elaborate Tenacious D set. I did not however, anticipate the amount of energy and fervor that the group would bring to the stage. The showmanship was truly exemplary and I look forward to the day that I can see Tenacious D live again.